Bedding Plants – Relocating

Q: We’re going to have major construction at our home. I need advice on relocating some bedding plants to keep them out of harm’s way until the work is completed next fall The plants include bearded iris, daylily, cone flower, bellflower, and jonquil.

A: I think the plants will be fine if you heel them in. Dig a trench two feet wide and six inches deep. Pile the removed soil beside the trench, which can be as long as you like. Dig individual plants and put the root balls side by side in the trench. It is fine to crowd them a bit if you have to. Try to keep the roots buried at the same level at which they were growing originally. Once the plants are all lined up in the trench, cover the root balls with the soil you originally removed. Water them thoroughly to get good root to soil contact. All of your plants should be perfectly happy waiting there until planting time.